It is widely known that homeownership is an important neighborhood stabilization goal for urban areas. For LCW, homeownership is also a critical “family asset building strategy” to help families escape the cycle of persistent poverty.
Only about 35% of the housing stock in Lawrence is owner occupied. In the North Common Neighborhood, the rate is just over 15%. With the foreclosure epidemic of the past few years, those rates have decreased even further. LCW feels that a healthy homeownership rate for Lawrence should be between 55-60%. Despite the current foreclosure crisis, the ambition and persistence of our population remains a hallmark. Even now, LCW’s homebuyer clinics are full to capacity and even some of those who have suffered foreclosure are working hard in the LCW Family Asset Building Department to rebuild their credit and savings.
Since 2001, LCW has provided homebuyer support to hundreds of Lawrence residents and helped over a hundred first time homebuyers purchase their first home. In addition, LCW has developed 19 new 1 and 2 family, Award Winning homes for first time homebuyers on 8 parcels of previously vacant land. And while in the first half of 2008, over there have been over 300 foreclosures in Lawrence, none of the families occupying LCW homes or who have purchased a home with LCW support have suffered foreclosure!
LCW’s commitment to creating opportunities for first time homebuyers remains strong.